Compliance Complexity Creates Opportunities

By Michael Vizard  |  Print this article Print


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The new Obama administration will likely enact a new slate of regulatory compliance requirements that will open new demands for IT goods and services.

There’s been a lot of chatter about the potential impact that the new Obama administration might have on government-funded IT projects. There’s no doubt that as the government moves forward on an impressive array of economic stimulus projects, large numbers of IT projects are sure to follow.

For solution providers looking to the government to help them through this economic crunch, the impact that government spending may have in terms of creating new IT business might not be felt until 2010.

But there is one sector of the government that is likely to have an immediate impact on IT spending; it just may not directly involve a whole lot of government money. Instead, with a stroke of a pen don’t be surprised to see a rash of compliance-related pronouncements to start emanating from the office of the new chief performance officer for the U.S. government.

It is Nancy Killefer’s job to make sure that all government agencies are complying with best practices set for forth by her office. What that means is a whole lot more governance, risk and compliance (GRC) management work for government agencies and any entity they do business with.

Killefer, most recently senior director of management consulting for McKinsey & Co., is no stranger to compliance issues. As such, she can be counted on to enforce the letter of the regulation in an administration that is promising more regulations everywhere.

Some business executives will probably find the cost of complying with all those new regulations burdensome, but for IT services companies that specialize in GRC technologies and services, the impact these regulations will have on their business will almost be immediate.

The major challenge is these economic times will be coming up with the funding for these GRC projects. That means that customers will be looking for more efficient tools to automate the GRC process as much as possible in the hopes of reducing the total cost of coming into compliance.

There are a number of vendors that specialize in IT governance technologies so there are plenty of products to pick from in this space. But none of them provide a holistic GRC solution, so the opportunity for solutions providers is to take any number of these products to create a GRC framework for their customers.

The good news is that every business executive in America knows these issues are coming their way. So awareness of the issues associated with GRC has never been higher. So chances are really high that if you pick up the phone and ask your customer if they want to have a strategic conversation about GRC, chances are they’ll ask you how quickly you can come over.

Mike Vizard is head of Ziff Davis Enterprise’s Market Experts Group and regular contributor to Channel Insider.


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